Poetry from Tan Tzy Jiun : Abecedarian & Leaving Sao Vicente

from pixabay

The Abecedarian has been previously published on Palette Poetry (Dec 2021). The second poem is unpublished.

Abecedarian on attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

We short-circuit all such complexity by slicing time down to its barest bones.
— Edward Hallowell & John Ratey

A citadel of faceless names. A plantation of burnt worms.
Bees with no hive to go. I dropped
comets into lakes, spilled words I didn’t mean. Every bedtime I grieve my
distance to earth, bald my shadow to chase the promised
euphoria of to-do lists & calendars, till my spine
falls like a brave dead tree. I take naps in
graves of lost items. On the banks of veiny rivers, panic throbs like
hummingbird wings, headless & without rest from the perpetual
itching. Yes, I sometimes enjoy the
jumanji of dopamine, the roaring between my ears. My
kryptonite is the morning after – when I walk the walk of shame back into the swampy
lull. Some days I am a warm bullet shell. Some days I am my own deus ex
machina, prancing like a creature of many feet from
now to not now. I write cocaine & snort a bank & rob a poem all at
once. My husband orbits my gravity with tired
patience. Better to be unsteady together. Make lemonades out of
quarrels. We keep our laughter sunny side up. When the diagnostic
results came in I cried a little bit. I have lost so much, beaten
senseless by my own fists. In murky waters, lotus plants
unbosom their hearts, pink capsules floating in clear waters.
Vyvanse is the saint I didn’t know I needed. Clear-eyed, I
wade through the receding water. Dear sleep, I will no longer exhume your wisdom. The ghosts in the citadel have lost their barbed tongues,
yellow away in boredom. It’s morning. I break free. A
zucchini hatching out of its flower. Traverse the shallow waters
          I have been drowning in my whole life.

Leaving São Vicente

After the sizzling rain, the shimmying clouds,
the uncareful birds  –

a mosaic of dew unspools under
the weather, glazed in jaded and petrichor.

The chihuahua next door barks at the low-hanging sun,
flutters like a dying leaf after peeing

on the orange tree, eyes hoggish. Looking
beyond the port's lulling waves,

the world waits for me, marbled & veined
& fresh like the sea. I lost my heart

in the graffitied capillaries, between ligaments,
to the old women who made my bread,

– the prisons they tell me about. 
My skin taunts the dead. Ancestors 

everywhere. Nostalgia & horror evenly cloved.
Coat-hangered. Scaffolded. Vigilant of white men

and impossibly in love with one of them.
Tonight, an oil spill impersonates my grandmother's moon.

All our roots grip the world under.
I, too, am afraid to let go.

Wolfpack Contributor: Tan Tzy Jiun

By davidlonan1

David writes poetry, short stories, and writings that'll make you think or laugh, provoking you to examine images in your mind. To submit poetry, photography, art, please send to feversofthemind@gmail.com. Twitter: @davidLOnan1 + @feversof Facebook: DavidLONan1

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